The city of Elkins has made some great strides in the last year. Financial savings resulted from the restructuring plan, and aesthetic qualities improved with renovations to city hall.
Mayor Duke Talbott touched on those and other accomplishments in his review of the year's progress. While we agree that those are significant changes to the operation of Elkins city government as we know it, what's proposed to come is a whole other transformation.
Talbott, and some City Council members, would like the city to explore the possibility of instituting a city manager-style government. This would mean that one person appointed to the position would be responsible for the city's administration. However, before that could be put into place, residents would have to vote to amend the charter.
This major undertaking is not necessarily a bad thing. It's also not a new practice. Some area municipalities - Philippi, for example - have had this form of government for quite some time.
Whether City Council will agree to move in a new direction and what type of reception it will receive from voters is yet unknown. Without a doubt, though, this is one issue to watch this year.